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How One Traveler Woke Up in the Dark and Trapped Alone Inside an Airplane

December 12, 2013
URL: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230352

It's not exactly Snakes on a Plane but, for some, could be just as scary -- especially for frequent business travelers.

A Louisiana man named Tom Wagner was flying to California recently to visit his sister. The plane had a layover in Houston so Wagner took off his hat, got comfortable in his window seat and decided to take a little nap.

Sounds reasonable. But when Wagner woke up, the airplane cabin was completely dark. He was alone. All the cabin doors were locked.

No, Wagner wasn't having a nightmare. The crew from his ExpressJet flight had cleaned and locked up with Wagner still asleep on the plane.

In a panic, Wagner used his cellphone to call his girlfriend. About 30 minutes later airline workers opened the door and let him out.

Related: American Airlines CEO: Fares Won't Rise if Demand Holds Steady

"ExpressJet is investigating to determine how this occurred. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this caused for the passenger," the carrier said in a written statement to CNN. ExpressJet is a partner with United. 

United put Wagner up in a hotel for the night and gave him a $250 voucher for his flight to California the following day. But how the flight crew could do its usual post-flight cabin inspection and leave a passenger on board is pretty nightmarish.

Below, watch the CNN video of Wagner explaining his ordeal: